[Review] - Warehouse 13 Season 4 Finale, Episode 10 "We All Fall Down"


Courtesy of NBCUniversal
I think I can say with some certainty that season 4 of Warehouse 13 was its most uneven. Certainly its least satisfying. So it really shouldn't come as any surprise that its finale was the least satisfying of its endings. An hour passed, and ended rather suddenly, but it never really felt like a finale. I wonder if the extended 20 episode order, which will conclude next year as season 5, or 4.5, or whatever, lulled the writers into a mind set that the tenth episode didn't need to be as pressing, or exciting as usual, because they still had ten to go. Whatever happened behind the scenes, Warehouse 13 concluded with not exactly a whimper, but far from a bang.

Hit the jump for the review, which contains spoilers that have developed a split personality.

I will say this, bully to the show for resisting to urge to crank NotArtie up to eleven. He wasn't a snarling, wild eyed crazy man. He was calm, very reserved, almost like McPherson in a way. Which made his taunts all the more effective: it never seemed like it wasn't Artie. Which also lead to the most frustrating part of Nartie: he never seemed like he wasn't just Artie. There wasn't that dramatic a change in the character, which is probably why they had to keep spelling it out for us, in some of the most abusive anvil hammering this show has ever done, and this is coming from a show that spent the majority of this year forcing Brent Spiner to repeat the same three lines over and over again.

I don't know what the writers intention was for Nartie, but they never seemed to have a firm grasp on the character. Is he the worst of Artie's intentions? Is he a split personality? Is he possessing Artie? Nor did they seem to really have a handle on his game plan. Finding and unleashing the Orchid seems like a good enough plan, but they also suggest he was just doing it to force the team to give him the Astrolabe, which is completely removed from the equation. And that damned knife, which the writers seemed obsessed with despite it's involvement in this episode feeling incredibly forced. It almost seems like they kept finding stuff on Wikipedia that they wanted to use, but didn't have the patience to wait for a logical time to introduce it.

Last week I discussed the problem with killing a character after another has already returned from the grave, and this episode highlighted those problems more so. The team barely mourns for Leena, which is more jarring considering that last year, they practically fell apart over Jinks, someone who they had known for less then a year, and the problems they were facing then were a lot more pressing then there were here. As far as I can tell, they just left her in the Warehouse, presumably waiting for a Roomba to come along and clean her up, when they went off chasing Nartie to Berlin.

I speak a lot about the ideas getting in the way of the story. This is a perfect example. the writers, from day, clearly wanted to have Claudia stab Artie. In this episode, they clearly wanted to dive into Warehouse 8. they clearly wanted to use the orchid. Problem is, they then had to force the story to fit those ideas, even where the pieces don't fit. This is most obvious with the knife, which directs more of the action then any of the characters do. The writers had to, at all costs, find a way to get it into Claudia's hand, logic be damned.

At the end of the episode, I was grasping for something in the episode to point to and say "this was done well." However, despite it's flaws, it wasn't the worst episode of the season either. It was just mundane. Unexceptional. A solid meh, as the kids say (do kids still say meh?). I was never coaxed to the edge of my seat, or emotionally compromised by the goings on. More then anything, I found myself looking to the clock, waiting the episode out. I tolerated it for an hour, and you should never have to force yourself to tolerate a TV show. It should pull you in, hook you, and leave you clamouring for more. Last year, at this time, I wanted more of Warehouse 13. The smouldering wreckage, the heroic sacrifice, the ambiguous yet hopeful "not yet." This season failed to live up to the promise that moment delivered. I, frankly, could care less, about the smoke monster from LOST escaping out to infect a world of stock footage aerial shots with... something. And unlike last year, I can stand to wait a spell before we return to the Warehouse.

So help me gods, if I ever hear Brent Spiner say the words "darkness", or "within" again, I'll put my foot through something I love.
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About MR. Clark

Adopting the descriptor of "successfully unpublished author", MR. Clark began writing things on the internet in 2012, which he believed to be an entirely reputable and civilized place to find and deliver information. He regrets much.

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